A Tourism Field Survey was carried out by two officers of the Department of Domestic Tourism; Mr. Akpan U. Effiong (PCS) and Mr. Bassey A. Peters (TO I) at Nasarawa State from Tuesday 7th – Thursday 9th May, 2019.
- Nasarawa State, Located in North-Central Geo-political Zone of Nigeria known as the ‘Home of Solid Mineral’. It has 13 Local Governments namely Awe, Akwanga, Doma, Karu, Keana, Keffi, Kokona, Lafia, Nasarawa, Nasarawa-Eggon, Obi, Toto, and Wamba. It was one of the six states created in 1996 by the military regime of late General Sani Abacha. The state was carved out of the old Plateau state and ever since it was created, the state has grown to become one of the top tourist states with its magnificently beautiful landscapes and spectacular highlands.
- On arrival, the Management Staff of Nasarawa State Ministry of Information and Culture represented by the Permanent Secretary welcomed the team from the Federal Ministry. Thereafter, he handed over the team to the Director, Tourism Mr. Ramalau Aminu A.
- SITES/ATTRACTIONS VISITED ARE AS FOLLOWS:
FARIN RUWA FALLS
Farin Ruwa waterfalls, which was first discovered in the 1950s by the colonialists, is a spectacular waterfall about 120 kilometres away from Lafia the state capital. It is 30 kilometres away from Wamba Local Government headquarters and about 160 kilometres from Abuja, Nigeria’s Federal Capital. The waterfall is geographically situated in Wamba Local Government Area of Nasarawa State – just between the boundary of Bokkos and Wamba local council areas of Plateau and Nasarawa States respectively. To develop the waterfall to international standard, the State Government is investing millions of dollars to build chalets and a hotel complex, a golf course, water and amusement parks, among other recreational facilities that will attract tourists by their thousands. It is truly a magnificent work of nature for its high level falls which is about 150 metres high and 50 metres wide, absolutely incomparable with other waterfalls in Nigeria.
Farin Ruwa Waterfalls.
- EGGON HILLS & CAVES:
Eggon Hills range over 30m and they are famous for adventure. The rocks which shaped like kopjes and inselbergs have long attracted visitors ever since the colonial rule. Europeans settled at the peak of these hills and constructed houses beside the slow flowing streams and unique rock formation.
- OKU AKPA ROCK AND PICNIC CENTRE:
This rock formation along the Nasarawa village is suitable for picnicking, mountaineering, hunting, bird watching etc.
OKU AKPA ROCK.
- AKIRI SALT VILLAGE:
Located in Awe local government area and about 145km away from Lafia, Akiri village is another salt village in the state where local salt miners use spring water for salt processing.
AKIRI SALT VILLAGE
Ara rock is located at Ara town about 12km away from Nasarawa town and 220km away from the state capital, Lafia. Ara rock with a measurement of about 120m from the ground stands magnificently like a tower overlooking Ara town.
- DOMA DAM:
Doma Dam is situated some 6km away from Doma town and it is about 30km away from Lafia. Doma is a man-made dam meant for agricultural irrigation and the dam is structured into three arms with each arm measuring more than 2km in length and 30m in width. The surrounding of the dam is hilly with thick vegetation. Fishing is permitted by the dam, which is a popular picnic site in the state.
The following are the challenges encountered at most tourism sites in Nasarawa State according to the information gathered and personal assessment:
- Lack of Policy implementation;
- Security Challenge;
- Lack of proper management;
- Lack of proper data;
- Inadequate investment and funding;
- Political unrest; and
- Lack of awareness.
- Provision of adequate infrastructure that support tourism such as hotels, electricity, good road networks, sea ports where necessary and intentional boost of medical sector to make it more reliable for citizen and foreigners alike;
- Tackling insecurity issues within the country and bringing terrorism to zero-level. This will give a facelift to the country as a whole, even in the eyes of international media;
- Tourism should be adequately budgeted for. This is so that the sector can have enough funds to bring even benefits in revenue;
- Implement policies that are in favour of development of the country and tourism in particular; and
- Educate the locals around the tourist attraction on how they can benefit and get them gainfully employed in the whole process.
Department of Domestic Tourism,